Physical Education

Head of Department:  Mrs L Taylor

Examination Board:  AQA

Course Content

The course develops students’ knowledge and understanding of how:

  • different factors combine together in varying ways, to influence the quality of performance in a variety of physical activities;
  • performance can be improved through practice and by analysis and evaluation

Learning is underpinned by its application in the coursework through the practical performance assessments.

Unit 1:  Opportunities for and the effects of leading a healthy and active lifestyle.

Section A

Applied exercise physiology

  • health, exercise and fitness     nutrition
  • pulmonary function                  transport of blood gases
  • cardiac function                       analysis of movement
  • levers

Skill Acquisition

  • Information processing
  • Opportunities for Participation
  • concepts, categorisations and benefits of physical activities
  • current provision for active leisure
  • role of schools and national governing bodies
  • barriers and solutions to participation

Section B:           

  • Applied exercise physiology in practical situations
  • Skill acquisition in practical situations

Unit 2: Practical coursework

Section A: Perform effectively in two of the following: performer, official or leader


Candidates may choose to be assessed in their preferred roles from any of the activities listed


Category 1


Association Football




Canoeing/Kayaking(moving/inland water)




Gaelic Football




Hockey (Field/Roller/Ice)

Horse Riding




Mountain Activities



Rowing and Sculling

Rugby Union/League





Table Tennis

Tae Kwon Do


Track/Road Cycling/Mountain Biking


Water Polo


Category 2



Olympic Weightlifting




Category 3


Dance Contemporary/Creative/Ballet





Scheme of Assessment


Unit 1 - Opportunities for and the effects of leading a healthy and active lifestyle

Written examination:

2 hour paper     84 marks   60% of AS marks

Candidates answer six structured questions in section A and one question in

section B on a practical scenario.

Unit 2 - Analysis and evaluation of physical activity as a performer and/or in an adopted role/s

  • Internal assessment with   100 marks    40% of AS marks
  • external moderation                                                                     

Candidates are assessed on their ability to perform, analyse and evaluate the execution of core skills/techniques in isolation and in structured practice as either:

A player/performer and in an adopted role or in two adopted roles

In Section A candidates are assessed in two roles from a choice of three.


The A2 comprises two modules including a practical assessment and provides candidates with the opportunity to develop and extend their knowledge, skills and understanding and to enable them to identify the factors which lead to the optimisation of their own and others’ performance.

Unit 3:  Optimising performance and evaluating contemporary issues within sport

Section A: Energy systems

  • aerobic energy system                          anaerobic energy system
  • muscles                                                        preparation and training
  • sports injuries                                           mechanics of movement

Section B: Psychological aspects that optimise performance

  • personality                                                 arousal
  • controlling anxiety                                     attitudes
  • aggression                                                confidence
  • attribution theory                                       group success
  • leadership

Section C: Evaluating contemporary influences

  • concepts and characteristics of World Games
  • the Olympic Ideal and its place in society
  • deviance in sport
  • commercialisation of modern day sport

Unit 4 - Optimising practical performance in a competitive situation


Section A Perform effectively in one of the following:

Performer, official or leader/coach

Section B Observation, analysis and critical evaluation

performer – analysis of their own performance

leader/coach – analysis of a named performer

official – analysis of their own performance

Section C

Application of knowledge and understanding to optimise performance identify the causes of the weaknesses

suggest appropriate corrective measures


Unit 3 - Optimising performance and evaluating contemporary issues within sport

Written examination:
2 hour paper    84 marks 30% of A2

Candidates are required to answer three questions, one from Section A, one from Section B and one from Section C.

Unit 4 - Optimising practical performance in a competitive situation

Internal assessment with external moderation 120 marks 20% of A2

Candidates perform, analyse and evaluate their own performance in a competitive/performance situation as either a player/performer or an adopted role.

Then using their knowledge and understanding candidates identify their weaknesses; suggest causes of weaknesses and appropriate corrective measures.